This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Armed Forces Insurance. All opinions are 100% mine.
Did you know that some media outlets are estimating 80 percent of homeowners impacted by Hurricane Harvey did not have flood insurance?
As we watch the news coverage of Harvey and its path of destruction in southeast Texas, many of us are asking questions about home flood insurance. Here are the answers to 6 common questions regarding flood insurance for military families.
What is home flood insurance?
The definition of flood insurance is simple. It’s an insurance policy – that may be separate from your homeowners or renters insurance – that covers direct physical loss caused by an excess of water on land that is normally dry.
The National Flood Insurance Program says a flood is “a general and temporary condition of partial or complete inundation of 2 or more acres of normally dry land area or of 2 or more properties (at least one of which is your property) from:
- Overflow of inland or tidal waters
- Unusual and rapid accumulation or runoff of surface waters from any source
- Collapse or subsidence of land along the shore of a lake or similar body of water as a result of erosion or undermining caused by waves or currents of water exceeding anticipated cyclical levels that result in a flood as defined above.
*Mudflow is defined as ‘A river of liquid and flowing mud on the surfaces of normally dry land areas, as when earth is carried by a current of water…'”
The thought of “mudflow” and having to deal with it is enough to make me purchase flood insurance ASAP. I don’t want to be paying for the costs of cleaning up a mess made by mudflow. Am I right?
I don’t live in a high-risk flood zone, so I can skip flood insurance, right?
Wrong. Regardless of where you live, you want to seriously consider flood insurance.
More than 20 percent of flood claims come from homes outside of a high-risk flood zone, according to FEMA.
If it rains where you live, it can flood.
An intense thunderstorm isn’t the only cause for flooding. Unexpected causes of flooding include snowmelt, dams or levees breaking and new construction or developments in an area changing the flow of water above and below ground.
Did you know that the damage from 1 inch of water can cost more than $20,000?
If you want more information about evaluating your property’s flood risk, visit Armed Forces Insurance’s Evaluating Flood Risk resource page.
AFI writes flood insurance policies through Wright Flood, which is the largest insurance company providing flood insurance for the National Flood Insurance Program through FEMA. An agent with AFI’s Flood Department can answer questions about your level of risk and review coverage amounts with you. Call 1-800-495-8232 to speak with an agent today.
Does my flood insurance cover my living expenses if my home is damaged by a flood?
No. The national flood insurance policy only covers direct physical flood damage to the dwelling and does not provide additional living expenses. However, in 9 states (CA, FL, LA, MS, NJ, PA, SC, TX, WA) AFI may have a private flood policy that can provide additional living expenses.
Remember that emergency savings account that we are always nagging you to have? This is why. Your emergency savings account is there to cover the unexpected costs occurred during a national disaster.
I have renters insurance. Is flood included in my renters insurance policy?
It depends. AFI offers a renters insurance policy with a comprehensive endorsement does provide coverage for flood and earthquake but most other industry standard renter’s policies do not.
How long does it take for flood insurance to become effective?
There is a 30-day waiting period from the time a policy is purchased until you are covered, with the following exception:
There is no waiting period for a new federally backed loan closing. In this case, coverage is effective immediately, as long as the premium is presented at or prior to loan closing.
However in 9 states (CA, FL, LA, MS, NJ, PA, SC, TX, WA) AFI said they may have a private flood policy option with a shorter or no waiting period unless a storm restriction has been implemented.
Can I transfer my existing flood insurance to AFI?
Yes. Contact an AFI agent to work out the details. You can email your current flood policy to firstname.lastname@example.org and they will contact you to discuss the best options.